is the 14-year-old co-founder of Girl
Tech, a multimedia company dedicated to encouraging girls
to use technology. Jackie and her mother, Janese Swanson, started
Girl Tech six years ago after witnessing one of the products we
co-invented being marketed solely to boys.
Tech, Jackie worked with developers to invent new products and consulted
with designers about the way the products look and feel. She has
invented a number of toys and is in the process of producing a new
space-themed toy for girls. She also speaks often, discussing the
issue of gender equity.
is a member of the Young Women of NASA Advisory Council where she
shares her entrepreneurial experience and helps other girls achieve
Jackie watched the STS-93 launch at Kennedy Space Center, where
she had an opportunity to meet the astronauts. Jackie was inspired
by these role models, especially Kathryn Sullivan. Jackie also attended
a panel discussion with Sally Ride, the first woman in space; Marta
Bohn-Meyer, first woman to fly an SR-71); Donna Shirley of the Mars
exploration program; and Ellen Ochoa, first Hispanic woman in space.
several cancellations and four days of waiting, Jackie witnessed
the launch. Here is an excerpt from an article she wrote about the
Read the full story of Jackie's
It finally happened! Everything went smoothly this time. We got
all the way through the countdown, and the shuttle blasted into
space! It was even more fascinating than I had imagined.
It looked like a giant fireball hurtling towards the sky. Then it
turned into a bright star, and then a little star that kind of looked
like Mars. And then it was 200 miles above the earth, all within
How cool it was that the entire state of Florida could see the shuttle
shooting into the sky, but none of my friends at home in California
would have any idea of what it looked like. I knew I was going to
have a great story to tell when I got home.
I feel really lucky to have been invited to witness the shuttle
launch. It was one of the most exciting things I've ever done. It
also makes me want to try even harder to help other girls get interested
in technology. I want to keep spreading the word that science and
technology are not just for boys!